Arraignment delayed for suspect accused of beheading San Carlos woman

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Tuesday, September 13, 2022
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An arraignment hearing was delayed Monday for Jose Solano, man accused of beheading Karina Castro in San Carlos.

SAN CARLOS, Calif. (KGO) -- A courtroom delay for the man charged in connection with beheading a woman in San Carlos.

The suspect did appear for his arraignment but his attorney asked the judge to hold off on that, making a competency motion saying that he has a doubt whether his client is competent to stand trial.

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The 33-year-old Jose Raphael Solano Landaeta said nothing in court Monday, even when addressed by the judge.

Family members of the victim, Karina Castro, told ABC7's Dan Noyes last week that Solano was schizophrenic and on medication, something his family confirmed through his attorney.

San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe says that the call for a mental competency exam prolongs a preliminary hearing and trial but says the court is appropriately following the state's standard procedure.

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"We don't believe this is going to allow him to go free," Wagstaffe said. "It isn't like suddenly if you're not competent to stand trial, that you get to go free."

Family members of Karina Castro left the San Mateo County Courthouse in tears, too emotional to speak with ABC7 after getting their first look at Solano since their love one's murder.

Both law enforcement and Karina Castro's family say that Solano had been violent with Castro, leading her to get a restraining order against him in April. Still, Wagstaffe said Castro, never called police when Solano violated the order.

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"I completely in no way, am critical of the victim in this. It's something that we see constantly in the domestic violence arena," Wagstaffe said. "There's something called the cycle of domestic violence and this is one of them."

Through attorney Robert G. Cummings family members say Solano is a good person and confirmed he had schizophrenia. They offered their condolences to the Castro family.

Solano is still being held without bail and was also issued a restraining order against two children that the judge did not identify on the record though we do know Castro had two children, the youngest one with Solano.

Wagstaffe says Solano could face 26 years to life in prison.

Solano appears back in court Tuesday morning to have doctors appointed to evaluate his mental competency.

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